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August 29, 2014
Visitor Preview: Two or three five-star visitors
On Saturday the Florida Gators will look to rebound from a dismal 2013 football season as they host Idaho in the season opener. Though the game isn't exactly a marquee match-up, many top prospects are expected to be in attendance.
Inside the Gators breaks down just who the Gator Nation should expect to see in the south end zone bleachers on Saturday.
Florida will have many current commitments on hand as six pledges are expected to be in attendance. The most interesting of those six coming is Franklinton (La.) Pine three-star wide receiver Derrick Dillon, who is making his first visit to Gainesville since June.
The newest commit, Warner Robins (Ga.) Northside school three-star offensive guard Brandon Sandifer will be making the trip to Gainesville as well.
As for the rest of the committed visitors, they all hail from the Sunshine State as center Tyler Jordan, wide receiver Kalif Jackson, tight end Camrin Knight, and 2016 cornerback commitment Chauncey Gardner are all expected.
Perhaps the most interesting name on the visitor list for this weekend is Orlando (Fla.) Timber Creek five-star running back Jacques Patrick. The Rivals100 member was also expected at Friday Night Lights earlier this summer, but did not show. It will be interesting to see if he makes it in this time to get a first hand look at Florida's new offensive scheme. As Patrick's October decision approaches he is looking more and more like a Florida State lean. He also has official visits planned to Ohio State and Alabama for this fall as well.
A big time target that Florida is expecting is five-star defensive end Byron Cowart. The No. 1 rated player in the nation is about a month out from his college announcement and Florida is the leader in the clubhouse. Getting him on campus could only strengthen Florida's chances of landing Cowart.
Another Florida lean expected in the Swamp is St. Petersburg (Fla.) Lakewood Rivals250 wide receiver Ryan Davis. The four-star pass catcher has gravitated hard towards picking UF as this will be his third visit to Gainesville this month. There have been a few whispers of him possibly pulling the trigger this weekend.
Two other big name visitors expected this weekend are New Smyrna Beach (Fla.) offensive guard Jalen Merrick and Jacksonville (Fla.) Ed White athlete and North Carolina commit Javarius Davis. Though Davis is committed to the Tarheels he still is keeping open constant lines of communication with the Gators as well as Michigan and Southern California. If Florida continues to recruit Davis as hard as they have they should have no problem landing the north Florida speedster.
Merrick has also seemed to be a pretty heavy Florida lean as well dating back to the start of the summer. Merrick planned to have his decision over with before the start of the school year, but has since backed off that idea and says he would like to take visits this fall before making a verbal commitment. Miami and Florida have seemed to be the two biggest suitors for the longest.
A few other top 2016 names in attendance will be Rivals100 athlete Saivion Smith, three-star running back Tony Jones and three star tight end Jacob Mathis.
Commit and Targets Visiting Elsewhere: The Gators aren't the only school that will be hosting visitors this weekend and many of their biggest commitments and targets plan to visit elsewhere this weekend.
Four-star Florida commitment Adonis Thomas will watch Alabama play West Virginia in the Georgia Dome on Saturday in his hometown of Atlanta.
Five star offensive tackle Martez Ivey will take his first of five official visits this weekend as he heads to Auburn.
Five star defensive end CeCe Jefferson has tentative plans to visit Georgia for their home opener against Clemson. However Inside the Gators has learned that trip could possibly fall through and that UF would be his destination if Athens trip doesn't happen.
Two other top Florida targets expected in Athens for the Georgia vs. Clemson game is four-star Rivals100 linebacker Roquan Smith and three-star cornerback Darius Slayton.